Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Wrapping up Basketball....Finally

It has taken me a little while, but I am finally going to do a little recap on the NCAA Basketball season that was. A team that started the season hot, ended it hot. The Florida Gators won their first 17 games (including preseason NIT) and then won their final 10. The Gators were never ranked #1 all season (their first loss came as #2 on the same day #1 Duke lost), but definitely showed up at the right times. 4 of their losses came to teams that did not even make the Tournament (S. Carolina) or lost in the second round (Tennessee).

The NCAA Tournament may not prove who is the best team, but who is playing the best the last 3-4 weeks of the year. I am not downplaying Florida's Championship because they dominated the Tournament with an average margin of victory in the double digits. Basketball has a much better system than College Football. I would say on any given night, Florida could have beaten UConn, Duke, and most defintely Villanova or Memphis.

It is still very early, but looking ahead to next year Florida looks poised for another memorable season. All of their players have said they want to come back. The main one I would be concerned with if I was a Gator fan is Joakim Noah. Noah is saying all the right things right now, but lets wait and see after the agents are done whispering in his ear; his stock will never be higher than it is right now. I hope Joakim stays because I love college basketball. If he goes to the NBA right now, he sits for the next 2-3 years.

Other teams that should be near the top are North Carolina, UCLA, Ohio St, and Kansas. Many other teams (Texas, UConn, Duke, LSU) hopes will depend upon who of their young phenoms decides to stay in school.

This year was an up and down one for my predictions. I finished the Tournament on a slide at 17-9. As for the season, I was a respectable 113-55 (67%) with a strong finish after a weak start.

Start looking for some Spring football coverage coming up. Early favorites for the National Title are Ohio St, Notre Dame, and Oklahoma!

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